Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SOPA Rhetoric

It's been interesting to watch the activism around the Stop Online Piracy Act, the entertainment industry lobby's latest ill-conceived attempt at legislating against the inevitable. As many have pointed out, SOPA and it's cousin PIPA threaten the open internet and won't do much to curb piracy anyhow. You should let your gov't representatives know how you feel about it, and also give to the EFF or other organizations doing something about it. You can do both here.

One thing I find interesting is the rhetoric that the entertainment lobby is using is pretty effectively (with ignorant folk like those in government anyway) to turn this into an "America vs THEM" story. The four words being used repeatedly are "foreign criminals" and "american jobs" - namely that the former are stealing the latter.

Now, to be fair, part of what these proposed actions do IS aimed at giving the industry some tools to combat piracy from foreign sites, but they can also be used against Americans. On the other side, the victims they aim to protect aren't all American. They are artists that may be from other countries, and the content owner companies who are multi-national anyway.

Anyhow, it's just remarkable how on-message they are with those four words, and that our government reps haven't seen right through the rhetoric.

No comments: